(WFXR) — With Super Bowl Sunday in full swing, local government and law enforcement agencies are using social media to remind all football fans that any game plan involving drinking should also include a designated driver in the lineup.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that drunk drivers are involved in 48 percent of Super Bowl Sunday traffic deaths.
On Virginia highways, specifically, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles reports that 278 people were killed in 7,181 alcohol-related crashes in 2018.
However, there are other consequences to driving under the influence.
“If you’re caught drinking and driving, you can face jail time, lose your driver’s license and your vehicle, and pay up to $10,000 in attorney’s fees, fines, car towing, higher insurance rates, and lost wages,” says Shelby Crouch, the public relations coordinator with Virginia State Police.
In order to keep drunk drivers off the roads, state troopers will be extra vigilant both during and after the big game. However, here is some advice from Virginia State Police to keep your Sunday night from ending with a DUI.
For those who plan on going out to watch the game at a sports bar, restaurant, or Super Bowl party:
- Decide on a designated driver before the game starts.
- If you don’t have a designated driver, use your community’s sober ride program, call for a cab or a rideshare, take a bus or some form of public transportation, ask a sober friend or family member to pick you up, or just stay in for the night.
- Keep your friends away from the steering wheel if they have too much to drink.
- Defend yourself against drunk drivers by buckling your seat-belt.
For those who plan on hosting a Super Bowl party at home:
- Remember that you can be held accountable in the eyes of the law if you serve a guest who ends up in an alcohol-related crash.
- Remind your guests to designate sober drivers or arrange for alternate transportation before the game starts.
- Provide plenty of food and non-alcoholic beverages.
- Replace the alcohol with coffee and dessert at the end of the third quarter.
- Keep a list of phone numbers for local cab companies and confiscate the car keys of anyone who has too much to drink.